On 22 March 2021, Sergeant Major of the Army, Michael A. Grinston, formally announced the Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT ) 3.0. This adaptation of the ACFT came into effect on 1 April 2021. It includes six events (Three-Repetition Maximum Deadlift, Standing PowerThrow, Hand-Release Push-Ups, Sprint-Drag-Carry, Leg Tuck or Plank, and Two-Mile Run). Its one significant change is that it adds the Plank as a full 100-point.

The Army Was forced to Add the Plank Since Less than 10 Percent of Women Could Do a Single Leg Tuck

The Army went in full scramble mode to find an alternate event that women could pass without actually lowering the standards or saying that men and women needed different scores to pass.

An Army staff sergeant completes a deadlift repetition during the U.S. Army Japan 2020 Army Week’s Army Combat Fitness Test Fitness Warrior Competition.
Staff Sgt. Sharonica White completes a deadlift repetition during the U.S. Army Japan 2020 Army Week’s Army Combat Fitness Test Fitness Warrior Competition at Camp Zama, Japan, June 8. (U.S. Army/ Winifred Brown)

In addition to this change, ACFT 3.0 explored the establishment of an evaluation system where performance categories may be used to proportionally tier ACFT performance according to gender.

Did the Army Admit the Physiological Differences Between Men and Women?

If the tiered system were gender-neutral, many women would look weak. There would be virtually no women in the platinum or gold tiers, thus hurting promotions for them. So they were forced to separate the two.